How Do I Increase My Chances of Getting Published?

Proactive marketing and communications can be a tough concept to grasp at times. Beyond having a nice website and responding to RFPs, what other outreach is your firm actually supposed to be doing? One thing that everyone understands though, is getting published. It’s generally an immediate request when we meet with firms for the first time to discuss a communications strategy. So, how does the typical firm get coverage for their work and expertise?

Here are some of our tips to help you catch the eye of the media.

  1. Be realistic about what’s noteworthy. New projects and groundbreakings may get small mentions, but unless there is something truly unique about the project, those won’t get a lot of media attention. Identify projects or story angles from the perspective of an editor that’s trying to create great content on a deadline. What would they be proud to write about?
  2. Look beyond the big names. Not every project belongs in Dwell or Architectural Record. That doesn’t make them less important, it just means they aren’t a great fit. Often clients seek those out as the epitome of a great placement when in fact their target audience may not even read those pubs.
  3. Expertise is just as important as experience. You don’t have to receive a full project write-up to get media coverage for your firm. If you have subject matter expertise on your team that has key input in a newsworthy issue, your firm can still get the mention and the opportunity to build awareness as an expert.
  4. Develop relationships. What if a reporter or editor called on you regularly for answers to industry questions? It happens! Blind press release distribution doesn’t do the trick though. Finding publications that are in alignment with your firm’s brand and developing long-term relationships with business colleagues does.
  5. Awards are for you to promote. Winning design awards earns the respect of your peers and your clients alike. They help tell the story of your expertise more often than they are a story on their own though. Additionally, remember that many awards are sponsored by publications already, so the likelihood of another (potentially competing) publication picking up the story is diminished.

The Architecture Firm Website Quiz – What Kind of Site is Right for Our Firm?

The Architecture Firm Website Quiz – What Kind of Site is Right for Our Firm?

Looking to redesign or significantly update your architecture or engineering firm’s website can be a dream or a nightmare! The fact of the matter is that regardless of how simple the job seems to be at kickoff, competing priorities, content gathering, technology changes and other factors require a strategic approach to get the job done right and have your firm end up with a website that you can be proud of. Understanding the options and your main goals is the first place to start. Take our brief quiz to help get some direction on which type of website might work best for your AEC firm!

10 Tips for Improved Social Media for Architects

What does it mean to you and your firm to “get more out of” social media? Meeting the daily minimum of tweets and posting the occasional update on Facebook only goes so far in building awareness and generating fresh connections with your audience. To make your A/E firm’s social media more valuable, consider these tips.

1. Follow more target clients than peers

It’s easy to get caught up following other people that like the “same stuff” as you, but instead of keeping a stream of only architects and architecture firms, look for connections with your clients and their peers.

2. Read and interact with your clients’ trade pubs

If your firm practices commercial or retail architecture, identify trade publications that your clients may read. Following more of those types of accounts will make you a more valuable partner to your clients.

3. More fun, less funds

Don’t think about making money with every blog post or tweet. Have fun, share a little personality.

4. Try chatting after 5 pm

Connecting with clients on a personal level sometimes requires sharing or tweeting when you’re not in the office. We’re not talking about answering work email here, just remember that your clients care about their business even when they’re off the clock. Chime in every once in a while with a share or RT after 5.

5. Integrate your approach

Your website and your social media profiles aren’t two separate entities. In fact, they’re more like two stories in the same building. Make as many connections between your social media and your website as you can.

6. Monitor your web stats

If you don’t have Google Analytics (or something comparable), get it immediately. Knowing your most popular content, common search terms and traffic sources will help you create relevant future content.

7. Email can be social

Email marketing doesn’t stop with an open. Integrate your emails with social media platforms and consider repurposing email newsletters for blog posts.

8. Go beyond the big name tools

Start looking for blogs or online social communities that are more related to your clients and less generic. Houzz is a great example of a tool residential architecture firms can use with a much better impact than Facebook.

9. Solve a problem

If you want to prove that you care about your clients, help solve their problems when you aren’t getting paid. Creating a LinkedIn group for your clients to converge and converse can help them solve challenges while building your understanding of what your clients need.

10. Purge

If you’ve been active on Twitter and Facebook for a while, you’ve probably amassed a long list of likes and follows. Some of them are fantastic, while many may just be clogging your feed and distracting you. Twitter lists help organize your feed, but nothing is as easy as just plain deleting people. Don’t be afraid to clean up your accounts every once in a while.